1. CHORUS There is nothing stranger than man. As if he were a storm he strides through the waves of the winter seas and year after year he wears down the oldest god, earth herself, with his ploughshare. In his clever nets he captures whole nations of feather-headed birds and the ocean’s salty brood. He masters the beasts that wander the open hills and yokes with his cunning the long-maned horse and the muscled mountain bull. He taught himself speech and the flight of thought and imagined the laws of the city. He shelters himself from the hostile weather. He never meets the future without something in his hand. He has found a cure for every illness. Death alone baffles him. Skilful beyond imagining, subtle beyond hope, he can turn in his wilfulness to good or to evil. When he honours the laws of the city and the gods his standing is noble. But the man who betrays the laws of the city deserves no home. May one such as this never sit at my table. May a man like this never share my thoughts. 2. CREON Hard wills are first to break. The smallest bridle tames the wildest horse. Those whose pride is bitter are more shamed as slaves. This girl laughed in her insolence when she broke my law. Am I the King of Thebes or is she? She is my sister’s child but even if she were my daughter I’d take her life for this. I’ll trample all her pride under my law, she and her sister. Summon her: I saw her just now in the house, out of her wits with madness. Often the mind convicts itself when plotting darkness. But I hate more those who do evil and make a virtue of it. ANTIGONE Do you desire anything more than my death? CREON No more than that. Your death is everything. ANTIGONE Then what are you waiting for? You have nothing to say that can please me and I can say nothing that will charm your ear. What greater glory could I seek than to honour my brother? All men would say so if fear did not silence them. But you are a king and can do what you like. CREON You are alone among Thebans in thinking this. ANTIGONE They know it too but keep their mouths shut for fear of you. CREON Are you not ashamed for thinking differently? ANTIGONE I see no shame in loving my brother. CREON And wasn’t it a brother who died opposing him? ANTIGONE Yes, a full brother, born of the same parents. CREON Then is not your loyalty disloyal to that brother’s memory? ANTIGONE My brother would not say so. CREON He would if he were given the same honours as a traitor. ANTIGONE He was not a slave who died. He was our brother. CREON A brother who laid waste the land the other died defending. ANTIGONE In death all are equal. CREON There's no equality between this good man and that impious corpse. ANTIGONE Who knows what laws rule the land of the dead? CREON Even in death an enemy is an enemy. ANTIGONE My nature turns to those I love, not to my enemies. CREON Then love the dead when you walk with them in the world below. While I am king no woman shall rule in Thebes.